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Crown Symbolism (Top 6 Meanings)

Crown Symbolism (Top 6 Meanings)

What are the first words that pop inside your head when the word crown is mentioned? If you guessed royalty, victory, wealth, power, and strength, it is safe to say that you are correct.

However, throughout history, a crown has represented much more than just traditional, sparkly, and extravagant headwear made for the ones with royal blood.

Various crowns are based on the looks, jewels, and metals included, even based on the occasions they were designed for. The word crown is linked with a deeper meaning and has been interpreted differently throughout the years.

With this article, we hope to give you the answers to crown symbolism and its meanings through the years and today.

Crowns symbolize: royalty, victory, wealth, power, strength, religion, dominance, glory, and authority.

The History of Crowns

Crowns have gotten quite popular over generations for representing leaders, rulers, and royal blood, each being unique in its own way. For that reason, crowns have been widely desired since their creation in the copper age.

You may be familiar with crowns being used way back in time, but it may come as a surprise to know precisely when they were first designed. The oldest crown ever discovered (pictured below) was created by a culture that existed during the Copper Age between 4500 and 3600 BCE.

The oldest crown ever discovered, in the treasure of Nahal Mishmar.
The oldest crown ever discovered, in the treasure of Nahal Mishmar
Hanay, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

This crown, in particular, was entirely designed of blackened copper, with measurements of height and diameter of 7 inches. Even though this crown is considered the oldest, the culture that created it has featured several details on the rim, such as horns, birds, a hilt-shaped cross, and grills.

Since the Copper Age, crowns became increasingly popular and emerged in many cultures, including Egyptian civilizations, Native American tribes, the highland Maya, Aztec Indians of Central America and Mexico, and many more.

It is common knowledge that crowns are used to this day by the British Monarchy and the Tongan Monarchy. However, not all crowns are used for the same occasion or purpose, and most certainly, they are not the same. 

Therefore, following this article, you will familiarize yourself with crown symbolism and meaning.

Varieties of Crowns

Royal crowns collection of gold and silver jewelry of different types isolated vector illustration.
Royal crowns collection of gold and silver jewelry of different types

Every crown is special, whether that be of the jewels and materials used to make it or even the person and the event for which it was made. 

It’s no surprise that crowns are extremely extravagant, made with the rarest jewels and metals, so each differs from another.

Within the monarchies, there are three categories in which the crowns are known and used, which are the following:

  • Coronation – The British monarchy still practices this ceremony of crowning the new ruler. This ceremony has been practiced for over 1,000 years and is still one of the most important for a monarch. 
  • State crowns – Crowns that the monarch wears for different state occasions. For example, in the British monarchy, the Imperial state crown is worn by the monarch after the coronation ceremony and for the State opening of the parliament. Furthermore, this crown is a one that symbolizes the sovereignty of the ruler. 
  • Consort crowns – These crowns are worn on occasions, such as a coronation or other state affairs, by the consort of a monarch. 

The Inspiration for Crowns 

Royal Ballet of Cambodia dancers wearing Mongkut crowns.
Royal Ballet of Cambodia dancers wearing Mongkut crowns
‘dalbera’ (Flickr user, no real name given), CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The concept and meaning behind a crown are widely recognized; it has inspired many cultures to follow that example. For instance, the three crowns have become a symbol of the Swedish kingdom, referring to the three Magi, otherwise known as kings, and the three kingdoms of Norway, Sweden, and Denmark.

Furthermore, crowns have been an inspiration for India; in other words, they use makuta to express adoration for the Hindu kings and gods. Following this example, Thai dancers wear Mongkut (crown) in traditional dances inspired by the crowns worn by kings and deities.

It does not strike as odd for such a stunning piece of headwear to be an inspiration to many. It’s no wonder crowns are also famous and desired to this day.

What Is the Symbolic Meaning of a Crown?

Golden crown with jewels isolated on white. English royal symbol of UK monarchy. 3d illustration.
Crown of Queen Elizabeth

Over the years, rulers and cultures have interpreted crown symbolism and meanings differently. They have clung to various meanings, whether they are religious, spiritual, or commonly known by people.

Since the crown was originally used among monarchies and royals, the first thought that comes to mind linked with this symbol is wealth and power.

A prime example of the symbolic meaning of a crown is the Crown of Queen Elizabeth the second. This monarch has shown great leadership, power, influence, honor, and strength, which is a national symbol of the United Kingdom.

The crowns are not just mesmerizingly beautiful but are amongst the most expensive headwear globally. These pieces are designed with the rarest and purest diamonds, pearls, sapphires, rubies, and emeralds, so it is a no-brainer that they symbolize wealth.

Dominance is also linked with the crown symbol since among the monarchies with the coronation ceremony, the kingdom’s power, control, and leadership go to the ruler as soon as they are crowned.

In addition, the symbol of a crown is not only used in the context of monarchies and royals but also in a religious and spiritual context.

Religious meaning

Crown of thorns on white fabric.
Crown of thorns
Image by congerdesign from Pixabay 

Christians most commonly recognize the symbol of a crown. In this religion, a crown is associated with Jesus and eternal life but also with pain and suffering. The crown of thorns is probably the most acclaimed one in this religion.

This crown symbolizes the selfless sacrifice Jesus made for the people. He was beaten, mocked, and gruesomely killed while wearing a crown of thorns.

Even though a crown in Christianity symbolizes the Kingdom of God, it also represents the sacrifice, pain, and suffering Jesus endured for all the people.

How Are Crowns Used Today?

Smiling child wearing a crown with a present box on yellow background.

Nowadays, crowns are used as accessories in fashion and toys for children so that anyone can feel like a king or queen. 

Crowns are also used as a symbol of celebration, so it’s hardly surprising that they’re used for wedding fashion, dress-up outfits, and similar.

Crowns in fashion

Portrait of young beautiful bride wearing a bridal crown isolated on gray background.
A bride wearing a bridal crown

Crowns as accessories have been included in some of the most popular fashion shows by the fashion leaders of the world, such as Chanel, Dolce&Gabbana, and many more. 

Not only that, bridal crowns have become a hit on the market and are widely demanded for the sole purpose of giving that special royal touch on a bride’s wedding day.

Crowns are also popular in Spanish culture, where girls wear them on their 15th birthday celebration, celebrating the passage from girlhood to womanhood. This celebration (quinceanera) is one of the most important in a girl’s life, so it’s no surprise a crown is the most important accessory.

Crowns are of major significance to this day, so whether you get them as a toy or accessory, the feeling a crown on your head brings is unmatched. Even a crown of daisies can make you feel like a royal.

Nowadays, many people get crowns tattooed on their bodies to symbolize independence, strength, power, and glory.

Final Word

Crowns are undoubtedly used less today than they were years ago. 

However, there is no doubt that their significance will remain the same for years to come. It is safe to say that crowns have symbolized power and dominance throughout history till this day and certainly, this magnificent headwear will continue to symbolize royalty and authority long after monarchies collapse.